Nelson Mandela was like the Biblical Joseph, South Africa’s chief rabbi said in eulogized during the memorial service of South Africa’s first black President on Tuesday.
“So too, Oh L-rd, your servant Nelson Mandela, like the biblical Joseph, rose up from jail to become President of a mighty nation; he too transcended his personal pain and years of suffering to forgive and to embrace his brothers and sisters who had inflicted so much pain on him and so many millions of others, in order that our diverse South African family would not be torn apart by hatred and division,” Rabbi Warren Goldstein stated.
“Nelson Mandela spoke to our hearts. He brought us comfort. And through his mighty power of forgiveness he sustained us, and liberated our country from the pit of prejudice and injustice, unleashing the awesome generosity of spirit of millions of South Africans.”
Calling South Africans a “nation of heroes,” Goldstein called upon the creator to grant consolation to Mandela’s mourners.
In the days since Mandela’s passing, the Jewish community of South Africa held a series of memorials in synagogues around the country and the South African Jewish Board of Deputies, a national umbrella group, praised him as the “father of our nation.”
“South African Jews were with Mandela as fellow liberation fighters and as lawyers defending him at the Rivonia trial, as visitors during his long and lonely years on Robben Island, and then in assisting in the exciting years of building the new South Africa. And so we mourn his loss together with our fellow South Afri
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